(RED) targets music and gaming fans

Aids charity initiative (RED) is to communicate a more focussed message through an expanded portfolio of experiential events as part of an overhaul of its marketing strategy aimed at countering “fatigue and ambiguity” about global issues.


Brands such as Xbox, Converse and celebrities including Elvis Costello and Michael Jordan, are partnering with charity organisation (RED) as part of the intiatives as the organisation seeks new ways to engage consumers and raise funds to help eradicate HIV and AIDS.

It is launching the (RED) Rush to Zero campaign to focus specifically on eradicating mother to child transfer of HIV by 2015 rather than tackling the broader issue of Aids.

(RED) will target young people through gaming and live music events such as (RED) Rush Games – a global video game tournament in partnership with gaming conference E3 and (RED) Music – a ticket auction for music gigs from major artists including Leonard Cohen and Coldplay.

Previously (RED) has focused on a product led fundraising strategy that sees partner brands donate money to the cause for (RED) branded products bought by consumers.

(RED) hopes to leverage social media and PR around the events, brands, bands and celebrities involved to raise awareness and grow support. Beats by Dr. Dre will host a launch party for (RED) Rush to Zero at its New York store on 2 June.

Deborah Dugan, CEO of (RED), says: “We narrowed the cause, but we’ve expanded the ways to ‘be (RED)’. We don’t want to just say ‘buy this (RED) product’ we want people to ‘be’ (RED). We will only get over the finish line if we create new funding opportunities and new ways to keep people engaged and energized. (RED) will do its part by bringing business, culture, sport, and empowered women together to help empower other women and their children by ensuring that the next generation is born HIV free.”

Dugan also hopes to add further brand partners and triple the number of (RED) products it sells.

(RED) is part of Global Fund, an organisation that raises funds to help cure AIDS.

Gabriel Jaramillo, general manager of the Global Fund, which (RED) is part of, adds: “As the global economy threatens public sector funding, more than ever we need innovative fundraising models like (RED), which has done so much to align the private sector to our goals. We’re excited about (RED) Rush and its ability to tap into popular culture to help deliver a key milestone on our path to ending AIDS.”

The (RED) Rush Games
As part of (RED) Rush Games, launching on 1 June at E3 in Los Angeles – the world’s largest gaming conference, gamers globally can donate to compete against each other and celebrities on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 games including Madden 12, FIFA 12, KINECT Sports Season 2, and Gran Turismo 5.

Celebrities and brands involved include Converse, Michelle Rodriguez, Samantha Ronson, Bugaboo, Michael B Jordan and Ryan Cabrera.

(RED) Music
Artists including Bryan Adams, Leonard Cohen, Coldplay, Elvis Costello, Sheryl Crow, Death Cab for Cutie, The Killers, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and The XX will auction premium seats and exclusive concert packages in an initiative called (RED) Rows with proceeds going to Global Fund.

Live music venues across the U.S. will also run (RED) Music promotions and a (RED) album will be released.

Cash & Rocket (RED) Tour
A group of 70 female entrepreneurs, lawyers, designers, doctors, CEOs, models, architects, fashion stylists including Jemma and Jodie Kidd traveling from London to Monte Carlo in (RED) branded vintage cars as part of a fund and awareness raising tour.

(RED) is part of the Global Fund and has raised $190m since launching in 2006. Brand partners include Apple, The Coca-Cola Company, Starbucks, Converse, Beats by Dr. Dre, Belvedere, Bugaboo, Gap, Nike, Penfolds, SAP and American Express.

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